86 clicks, 53 miles or two whats?

I’m still running.
I’m still loving it.

We started April 16th 2013. Terry and I ran 2.5 miles, two days later we ran 1.7 miles, then a few days after that, we managed 3.2 and so on.
You can read a bit about it here

Its been a real team effort getting me here. Our dear friends Mark and Shanna teaching us about Paleo and how to eat right. Freddy getting on board with the meals. Bob and Benson letting me run with them at lunch and encouraging me through those last hot days of summer (I really don’t like running in the heat. Just not used to it yet).

Have been building up my miles and the frequency every since Bob showed me how to breath and thus run pain free, and Benson gave me tips to get fit enough to do more than 2-3 miles.
Had a little glitch around October, got some knee pain. Benson to the rescue again, he said it sounds like my ankle was rolling and I should look at changing my shoes.
I had been running in just my sneakers…. Apparently, there are sneakers and there are runners. They are not the same shoe. Who knew.

Hope you’re sitting down.
I went to the running shop and brought some runners.
Figured since I love it so much, we may as well put my money where my enjoyment is. (As Terry says, ‘Spend your money where you spend your time’ – When did my son become so wise?).
Yeah, $160 bucks on a pair of runners. Hard to believe. Trust me, I had to hand it over…. In case you are wondering, we got a set of Asics. Kayano 19‘s.
I. Love. These. Shoes.
There, I said it.
With the new shoes, the miles started to come not only ‘easy’, but also at all hours… Its one thing I really love about running, shorts, shirt, socks and shoes is all you need. And even some of them are optional…..

Ok, so there is a point to all this.
Had a bit on my mind over the past few weeks. Got to the point where I had a bit of a melt down. Something had to change.
I have not been sleeping all that much, and rather than just lay around surfing the web on my phone, I have been getting up and running at the wee hours of the morning.

Before this run, my previous personal best was 8 miles (9min19sec/mile), so I wanted to top that on this particular morning. I seriously thought about doing 13.2 miles which is a half marathon distance, but once you run a distance, you will never run it for the first time again, so I stopped at 10 miles (16kms) (8min51sec/mile).

So what was next after the 10 miles? The obvious thing is 13.2 miles, run a half marathon distance.
While I was thinking about it, it occurred to me that I did not know what sort of ‘training’ miles I could do in a week. So, last Sunday night, while sitting on couch I had a thought……….

Next week, I would run 50 miles.

This was pretty much exactly double what I had been doing each week by default.
(I generally run 4 miles in the morning, or at lunchtime 5 days a week. Right there is my standard 20 miles a week (32ks).
The 20 miles a week is fine. Its got to the point where I dont even think about it. Its just something you do.
So I figured (wrongly as it turns out) that doubling it would be straightforward.

After running the 10 miles in one hit 2 weeks ago, I knew I could do 10 miles, but figured it would make it a little more doable and keep the mental refresh running in the morning seems to bring by doing 6 in the morning and 4 at lunch with Benson (Bob was in China and Norma (the three we usually run with) had a cold). The 4 at lunch is great, really breaks the day up and gives the afternoon a whole different outlook.

So, Monday morning, 4:10am I set off. Goffed picking my route and did 8 miles, but whatever.
Monday lunch, another 4. Very straight forward.

Tuesday morning, yeah, ok, feeling something now, but got my route right and did 6.
Tuesday lunch. Not too bad, feeling a bit tight in the legs.
Tuesday afternoon is my weights session with an ex-marine at work. Its a lot of fun and a great upper body workout.


Opto has a great gym, but I have always been a bit intimidated by the machines, so having Ron walk me through his workout has just been fantastic.
Only trouble is, after running 20 miles in two days, (my usual weekly amount) I was not, oddly enough, as energetic as usual. My weights and reps were way down.
To the point where half way through I started to question if it would affect my running for the rest of the week. (I was thinking that running did nothing for my upper body, so it couldn’t hurt right?)

Wednesday morning. 4am. Huh, this is going to be really something. At the 3 mile mark, I am thinking, yeah, bit off more than I could chew here.
Wednesday lunch. Wow. Benson must have seen me really struggling and asks how far I had run in the morning. When I told him the plan, he went quiet for a few steps, then said, ‘You do realize that 50 miles in a week is two full marathons?’.
My turn to go a bit quiet…. I had thought of them as just training miles, not a total distance. Because I had split them up into daily miles, the total distance had not really sunk in.
By the time I got home Wednesday night, I was in a fair bit of pain.

Thursday morning took some work to get out of bed. From when I woke up at around 3, it took a full hour and a bit to talk myself out of bed and hitting the street.
It was the hardest morning of the whole week.
Its just down to being stubborn by this stage. If I give up now, then the efforts from the previous 3 days has been for nothing.
At the 5 mile mark, I just want to walk a bit. I don’t. I set myself the goal of doing the week running or jogging, but no walking! The music helps. Trance of course.
Thursday lunch run Benson had to pace me and pretty much drag me around the route… Wouldn’t you know it, it was the first time we hit every single green light!! We did not get a single break the whole 4 miles!!!!
On the upside, Thursday night I did not feel too bad.

Here is a selfie from after the Thursday morning run.
Not a pretty sight I know, but remember, it’s 5:30am! Its all about function over form.


Propped the phone up on the Passat. That’s frost on the boot lid of the car in the bottom foreground.

Friday morning, I’m sore. Mostly my feet. Mostly my little toe on my left foot. By this stage I have done 49 miles (78kms). The 4 miles at lunch will push me well over my target (thanks to that route stuff up on Monday!), but there we are, 4:15am running. To add insult to the whole thing, every morning up till now has been cool. I run way better in the cold… Friday morning, its 20DegC, not the usual 0-5 it has been, and there is a hot wind! Not happy Ray, not happy at all!
Friday lunch run is tough. Luke is a friend of Benson’s, hes a really cool guy that runs with us at lunch when hes in town. Luke wants to do 5 miles.
Im like, you know what, lets do it, lets not just do the few miles we need, lets totally blow it away.
So, off the three of us go.
First mile and a bit is not too bad….. But it soon goes down hill pretty quick.
I’m thinking about my diet, if I have had enough of the right stuff to eat, if that would have made any real difference. Benson has been telling me about training plans to run a full marathon and the plan does not have this many miles in one week. (There is a reason for that, or so my legs are telling me).
Something mechanical cuts in and I just run.
The guys are talking, but I have no idea what they are saying. Im just running behind them, on auto pilot. Just following them, trying not to get left behind.
Now and then I can crack a bad joke with them, but for the most part, I am just running.
I’m just tired. The body has warmed up, the feet are sore, but its not really all that bad. Im just so very tired.
We end up doing 5.19 miles. Perfect. (No really, it was nice to feel pretty smashed).

So there we are. 54.9 miles in 5 days. Thats 88.3ish kilometers.


Average pace of 8 minutes 57 seconds per mile. That’s one second per mile faster than I did my 20 miles last week.
I have no idea what that would be per km (where is my math genius of a son when you need him? Oh, that’s right, he does not read this blog… smart kid).
According to my Runkeeper app on my Android, that’s a total of 7,322 calories burned up, 3,302 feet elevation climb. A total of 8 hours 11 minutes.

This week also ticks over 405 miles (651 kms) since Terry and I started a year and a bit ago.

So, in conclusion. I am pretty amazed that I did it. Yeah, its only one week, its not that big of a deal in the world of ultra marathon runners, but its still a nice achievement for me.
I learned a lot about myself. Listened to a lot of Trance and worked through some pretty heavy stuff in my head.

To answer your question, no, I did not lose a single gram of weight. I did not do it to lose weight. Long distance running like that is not the way to lose weight, not only, but also, it was only one week.
And the second answer is no, I wont be doing it again in a hurry.

So what is next?
Next is HIIT. I want to get fitter (and lose a little more weight, and shape a few bits here and there), so HIIT will be an important part of that process.
That said, I clearly get a lot of mental benefits from just ‘going for a run’, so I will still be doing that often enough.
Somewhere along the way I will get my 13.2 mile half marathon distance in. But I am not training or deliberately working on that distance, this week has really helped me see that I don’t really want to run to compete.

I just want to run because I love it.